Navigating in Kubuntu
All of the applications in Kubuntu are stored in the KMenu in the left-hand bottom corner of the taskbar. This menu is organized in a manner that flows smoothly and makes sense. Items that involve a connection to the Internet are grouped under the Internet section, while items that deal with music, videos, or pictures are grouped under Multimedia. Like everything else, this can be customized or changed to fit your needs. (We will discuss customization soon.) Any new application you install will find its appropriate spot in the KMenu.
Figure 7-7 Katapult provides an easy way to open just about any application without wasting time searching for its location in the KMenu.
The next three icons on the taskbar are shortcuts to the System menu and Show Desktop, Konqueror, and Kontact. The System menu allows you to navigate quickly to places such as your home directory, a listing of attached media devices, and even remote places. The Konqueror shortcut launches the default file management tool, which we cover in more detail later. Kontact is the default personal information manager (PIM) and will be discussed later as well. The Show Desktop icon allows you to quickly clear the desktop from open windows. Next to the three main icons in the taskbar is a quick launch applet that provides instant access to Konqueror, Kontact, Amarok, and Kopete. New to the 7.04 version of Kubuntu, any application launched from the taskbar or the desktop will provide launch feedback. The icon will enlarge briefly to show which application is starting up. To further emphasize the clean look of Kubuntu, there are no icons on the desktop, as Figure 7-8 shows.
Figure 7-8 The clean look of the Kubuntu desktop
The developers have spent a lot of time making Kubuntu easy to navigate and also very easy to customize.
Shutting Down Your Computer and Logging Out
To shut down your computer, log out, hibernate (for laptop users), or switch users, go to the KMenu and then select the option you would like. Kubuntu is a multiuser (many users per system) OS. You can either lock your session and switch to a new user or just start a new session. Another option is to lock the session so no one else can access your Kubuntu session without the password. The final choice at the bottom of the KMenu is End the Current Session, which you would choose to either turn off your computer, reboot, or end the current session (log out). Figure 7-9 depicts these options.
Figure 7-9 Logging out of Kubuntu
Using sudo Instead of a Root Account
A large change, and one that many seasoned users stumble with before getting used to it, is the lack of a root account. Upon installation you are not prompted to provide a root password. The password created with the first user, your user password, is the password that will allow you to access the administrative functions. There will be many times when configuring the system or making global changes will require the sudo password to complete.